orangutans are good planners
After several years tracking orangutans in the Sumatran swamplands, researchers made some surprising discoveries, they report in the journal PLoS One: Males make travel plans up to 24 hours in advance and share them with nearby orangutans by emitting long, loud calls that can be heard more than a half-mile away.
Their cheek pads act as a funnel, amplifying their calls like a megaphone.
"Males emitted long calls mostly facing the direction they traveled a few hours later, or even after a night's rest," said researcher Karin Isler of the Anthropological Institute and Museum in Zurich. Hearing a call, interested females might come closer to stay in contact, while nondominant males may flee to avoid a confrontation. The orangutans usually traveled about a half-mile a day, often looking for fruit from trees.
There are numerous examples of planning in animal species. A zoo chimpanzee, for example, was observed gathering stones and chunks of concrete before the zoo opened, for later use as ammunition against visitors. In experiments, bonobos and chimpanzees were also found to select and store tools to use in the future. Western scrub jays and Eurasian jays are also known to plan ahead.
Isler said the new study drove home the point "that we should not underestimate these magnificent creatures, and also other animals."
New York Times
Women take a shot at beauty
So long, cosmos. Hello, collagen drinks.
A new breed of cocktail parties has some women pounding shots — but instead of alcohol, they're infused with beauty treatments.
Packaged in one-shot bottles sold over the Internet, ingestible collagen is said to restore luster in hair, skin and nails.
This type of ingestible collagen has been all the rage for years in Asia, where the beauty beverages are manufactured. But only in the past few years has it reached American shores, industry watchers say.
Costs vary by product, but a 24-day supply of the U.S.-distributed Lac Taut brand goes for $220, according to the company website.
The fact that only limited research has been done on ingestible collagen or that its benefits are unproven has not dampened the enthusiasm.
Nutritionist Nicolette Pace said she has seen research suggesting that in the "worst-case scenario," some ingestible collagen may contain estrogen components.
"It's really a hot trend right now," she said. "Botox parties are being replaced by drinkable collagen parties."